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If you're interested in applying for a Nebraska commercial driver license (CDL), you must successfully complete a vision screening, written exam, and driving test. Additional tests may be required if you wish to add endorsements to your license (for instance, to drive a school bus or transport hazardous materials).
Education requirements for commercial drivers can be traced back to the Commercial Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1986. Before this act was passed by the federal government, there were many drivers who did not have the skills they needed to safely operate their vehicles.
The Nebraska Manual for Commercial Driver's Licensing reviews the information you'll need to pass the written CDL exam. The manual discusses topics such as transporting cargo, transporting passengers, skid control, using an air brake system, and driving combination vehicles. In addition, you'll learn about the Nebraska laws that must be followed to maintain a valid commercial driver license.
Since driving a commercial motor vehicle requires a different set of skills than driving your own car or truck, you may choose to enroll in a private CDL instruction program. Completing a commercial driver education program gives you the hands-on experience you need to safely operate a commercial vehicle.
The Nebraska Department of Motor Vehicles maintains a list of approved commercial driver training schools, but the department does not oversee the activities of these programs. Questions about fees, coursework, and program start dates should be directed to the school you wish to attend.
In most cases, a commercial driver education program will be based on the Federal Highway Administration's proposed minimum standards for tractor-trailer drivers. The curriculum should focus on helping students develop basic vehicle control skills such as shifting, backing, turning, lane changing, and parking. Other topics of discussion may include performing a vehicle inspection, transporting hazardous materials, and operating your vehicle under extreme weather conditions.
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